Manipuri girl, Khumanthem Diana Devi, made headlines overnight, as she cleared the prestigious Civil Service Examinations, conducted by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) and achieved a grand feat by bagging the 24th position. Khumanthem Diana is the highest rank holder among the 21 from the northeast who cracked the UPSC’s Civil Services Examination 2015. Diana’s achievement spread like fire in every corner of the region soon after the declaration of UPSC.
In 2015, Khumanthem Diana cleared the Indian Forest Service (Mains) examination which was also conducted by the UPSC. She was ranked 9 in IFS.
The first position was secured by Tina Dabi, followed by Aamir Ul Shafi Khan Akthar and Jasmeet Singh Sandhu in second and third positions respectively. The final merit list was prepared based on the results of the written examination held in December, 2015 and the interviews for Personality Test held in March-May, 2016.
Family Background of Khumanthem Diana
Khumanthem Diana Devi comes from Singjamei Top Thongam Leikai. Khumanthem Diana is one of seven clans of the Meitei tribe. But she have been living in Delhi for nine years. Diana is the fourth child of the five siblings. Diana’s father, Khumanthem Chandramani Singh is an Inspector General of Police and Director of Fire Service and Manipur Police Training College, Pangei said, “My daughter’s success is one of the happiest moments in my life.” Her mother Ibeyaima Devi is a housemaker.
Khumanthem Diana said her father being a police officer, is her role model and has always inspired and motivated her in achieving her goal. Her father showed her what an able administrator can achieve. On her achievement she prefers giving credit to her family, relatives and all other well wishers.
Khumanthem Diana is one of seven clans of the Meitei tribe. Some Meitei are demanding for Scheduled Tribe status, because they feel that deserving candidates are not getting jobs etc. The situation is somewhat like what we see in Haryana and other places. Here too many feel that there is need to define a creamy layer within existing reservations. For this she says, “Even I feel there should be a creamy layer because in Manipur the situation is unique. Here 40 per cent of the population is ST. My community is in the general category but the fact is there are a very few Meitei men in service.”
Also Read: Meet Jasmeet Singh Sandhu IAS, AIR-3, 2015
Educational Background of Khumanthem Diana
Khumanthem Diana did her schooling till 10th Standard from Nirmala Bas High School. In the year 2007, Diana topped the Board of Secondary Education Manipur (BSME) exams and was a state gold medalist. After that she did class 12th from Delhi Public School, Mathura Road. She got 95% in over all subjects and was rewarded with cash prize of 25000 in (2009). Subsequently, in 2009, she topped the Higher Secondary examination from Science stream. After completing her schooling Khumanthem Diana did B.Sc from Miranda House in Physics Honors from Delhi University. She again set a new record by scoring the maximum marks in the B.Sc examination 2012, Delhi University. After completing her graduation she pursued her Master Degree in M. Sc from Miranda House and again topped in Delhi University in 2014.
Khumanthem Diana is currently serving as a guest lecturer in Physics at Miranda House, Delhi University. She wanted to appear in the civil services exam since childhood. She loves playing lawn tennis and listening to music.
Khumanthem Diana opted for Physics as her optional subject. She says, “The secret for my success is a bit of luck and some principles—honesty, simplicity, patience, hard work, discipline and punctuality.”
Khumanthem Diana cleared Indian Forest Service and ranked 9th in IFS which was conducted by the UPSC 2015. Again she sat for her second trial and got 24th rank and got through IAS. Getting 9th rank in Indian Forest Service, I was happy. It was like a motivation to me to prepare myself for higher level. No doubt IFS is also a very good service.
This year Manipur has many successful candidates, and one reason is that people are better informed now. Earlier, Manipuris mostly pursued state service exams. Now they are more acquainted with what is happening through television, social media etc. Another reason is that the UPSC is considered a merit-based system, so more people feel encouraged to try.
Khumanthem Diana says, “To succeed in life one should be a soft spoken and one needs to respect their own teachers and parents and concentrate in their studies.” Inspite of devoting five to six hours daily on her lesson, Daina by no means was a bookworm and blind to the happening around her. On the issues confronting the State today, she has this to say, “Violence incidence of killing and crimes that are taking place in Manipur almost on daily basis is very sad.”
On the tag given to Manipur of being high in corruption, UPSC state topper Khumanthem Diana said at the sideline of her felicitation programme that corruption is not limited to Manipur but it exists almost everywhere. She said that people have taken corruption as part of their lives and that is their biggest mistake. “I cannot change everyone but I can live by example” and said that as her first step as administrative officer she can work with full integrity and sincerity.
“I want to serve my people in a much better way. It is just the beginning,” said Khumanthem Diana and added that she is looking forward towards working for the upliftment of the state, region and the country as whole. I really don’t know what future holds for me? But I will always make my best effort in life to do something meaningful for the society.